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Trying to make an oval pendant


#1

Hi

I need help.

I am trying to make an oval shape pendant out of round wire no
thicker then 2mm. To make oval shape I am using good quality mandrel
working with hammer all the way around,then I turn the wire over and
work it with hammer again.

The result is what looks like good oval shape from both sides. The
challenge is to solder the loop for the chain in the middle on the
top of the oval.

Even if I manage to center it by eye when I turn the oval over the
loop on the top does not look to be in the center. Is there any tool
that can help to position the loop right in the middle on the top of
oval shape? Or is there a way to precisely mark the middle?

Thanks
Joe


#2

I think an oval template would do the trick. My template has marks
on the centerlines of the circles (or ovals). With those centerlines
you could mark the middle of your oval for exact placement. I am sure
there is some algebraic method that you can use… but I don’t do
higher math :wink:

Laney


#3

Sorry Joe,

The best tool is the big hairless ape at the pointy end of your bench
pin. Sometimes hanging the thing on sewing thread will give a clue,
but not always accurate as it just gives close to the centre of
gravity. It doesn’t have to be mathematically accurate, it just has
to look right.

Practice and practice more, my fondness for ellipses has been very
educational :slight_smile:

jeffD
http://www.gmavt.net/~jdemand


#4

not sure if my idea whould help, but what i would do is cut the exact
size out of paper and fold it in half, this way it must be a middle
and then with help of the paper shape mark the silver oval.

good luck,
.t


#5

Hi Joe,

Sure there’s a tool. It’s called… a piece of string :wink:

The piece of string will work if your oval is balanced. Thread the
string through the oval, and elevate the sting so the oval can move
freely. You’ll get the balance point at the top of the oval.

There’s probably a better way, I’d just use my eye, but you asked
for a tool :wink:

Regards Charles A.

P.S. Lighting can effect how you see objects, so if you centre your
jump ring in the centre of the oval, it still may not “look” like
it’s centred.


#6
Even if I manage to center it by eye when I turn the oval over the
loop on the top does not look to be in the center. Is there any
tool that can help to position the loop right in the middle on the
top of oval shape? Or is there a way to precisely mark the middle? 

I do address this problem in my Coronet Cluster DVD, but if pendant
is large than another technique is required. If the exact shape is
known prior to making, than a template must be prepared with centers
indicated. When you have a template, the problem is trivial. Simply
overlay the template and mark the centers. In your situation, you
must find the point on the ellipse where long diagonal intersects
circumference. This is the point where ellipse dimensions are the
largest. Another issue is even if you find this point correctly, the
soldering is not trivial. Two shapes must have normals of their
tangents, drawn at intersection, forming a straight line. Any
deviation would create unbalanced appearance.

If none of this makes any sense, than empirical approach is to
carefully position two shapes using eyes only. Be very critical and
take your time. Examine from many angles and solder only when you
completely sure that position is correct. After you find the
position, walk away for 10 minutes; have a cup of coffee or
something. When you come back with fresh eyes, verify it one more
time.

This brings another problem into focus. I am asked quite often
questions very similar to this one. There is a universal solution. Do
not start making anything until you visualized each and every step,
and know what to do when you come to it. All problems should be
solved at drawing board and not at the bench.

Leonid Surpin
www.studioarete.com


#7

Superimpose a jewelers’ saw over your oval and adjust until you
think it’s centered along the long axis. You’re looking from the back
of the frame with the frame slightly tilted out of the way and using
the blade as a centerline. Since the frame is tilted out of the way
you can ‘see’ both sides of your bisected oval and can more
accurately judge overall symmetry. Its probably better to do this in
a north/south alignment rather than east/west, I think you can judge
discrepancies better that way. Put a tiny nick at the visual apex of
the short radius and solder the bale there. As to why the reverse
side may not look centered, it might be the bale. Do your best on
accurate bale placement on the front and camouflage the back by
trimming a little on the ‘heavy side’ of the bale back.

Sometimes you can alter the way something looks by polishing. Your
eye doesn’t really see the metal, it sees the reflected light bands
on it. Polish a bit more on one side of the oval and you can move
the reflected line in or out.

BTW, the sawblade /centerline trick also works for making strip
settings of graduated sizes.


#8

Actual straight is somewhere between measured straight and eye
straight. Really. Even professional piano tuners start with an
electronic tuner to set their first not, but it’s all ear from there
on out. If we’re big hairless apes, how come I spend so much money on
waxing?

Have fun and make lots of jewelry.
Jo haemer


#9

If you take a pair of pointed tweezers and bend both the tips in till
they are at a 90 degree angle to each other. Hold your item between
the tweezers points and you will be able to tell exactly where to put
your bale so that the pendant hangs level. The points of the tweezers
will leave a mark at the exact point of balance. I think this tip
from one of Charles Lewton’s books, which are great…Teddy


#10

Personally, I’d be tempted to start with a round shape, solder the
jump ring on, then mark the long axis on the oval mandrel and make it
oval with the soldered jump ring right at the long axis as marked on
the mandrel.

This may not work for everything, granted.

Also, if you put on the jump ring, and it’s a bit off-center when
done, perhaps you can re-shape the oval to center it.

Good luck!
Amanda Fisher


#11

I use mm graph paper on a flash light. It works as mini low tech
light table. Cut out a piece of graph parer that fits on your
torch… i use it to check my bezels as well, this works for me.
Kiffer


#12

Thanks to everyone for responding. I did use methodes described by
Charles Anderson and empirical approach by Leonid Surpin with
satisfactory results. However,because I am planing to make few of
these in different sizes(same shape of ellipse) I felt that some sort
of automation would be helpful. Also Leonid quite correctly touched
on soldering issue.

There are some vague ideas in my head. I will keep you posted.

Thanks again
Joe


#13

Hi george, Soldering oval collets on shank is an all time problem.
but the solution i hav found is that i check the piece in longitute
and then in lattitude position. i mean i never tie the shank and the
oval collet with the binding wire but hold it in the shank and see
it from both positions for it being in right position. it works.


#14
If you take a pair of pointed tweezers and bend both the tips in
till they are at a 90 degree angle to each other. Hold your item
between the tweezers points and you will be able to tell exactly
where to put your bale so that the pendant hangs level. The points
of the tweezers will leave a mark at the exact point of balance. 

This is true, but there are difficulties in practical
implementation. Tweezes must be bent exactly 90 degrees.

Angle must be maintained under stress, which could be difficult in
large sizes. Finding the balance point is only a part of the problem.
For the pendent to look right one need attachment point on pendent,
attachment point on bale, and both parts must be correctly aligned.
Violate any of the three and the work is wasted.

Leonid Surpin
www.studioarete.com


#15

For a stone pendant I wrap tape around the edge of the stone till it
overlaps, cut carefully across the overlap and peel it off. Place
that tape on the bezel (inside if it is step bezel) and cut with a mm
extra for filing. Shape around the stone to be set to check then take
off and solder with hard solder on the opposite end from where you
wish to join the bail or jump ring to it. Use a lower temperature
solder for the bail. Push finished job over stone. The stone will fit
very tight. If it is too tight use a small diamond cut off disc to
grind a tiny bit from the edge.


#16

Trying to make an oval pendant

came to this thread a bit late and because i have an intrinsic sense
of perspective almost passed over it. then later i saw the equipment
drawer with all the now-unused templates from my aerospace/defense
era, i thought of a possible solution: almost all art supply stores
sell plastic templates (the green ones that smell like the basement
of a frat house sunday morning) with every outline you would need -
ovals, squares, triangles, rectangles, polygons, etc. - in many
sizes on the same template. shape the bezel/etc. into the closest
shape you can and slip it inside the cutout of the shape closest to
your desired size. with a little adjusting the bezel can be tweaked
into a perfectly symmetric finished piece; every template cutout has
marks at the top, center, etc. so mark bail placement before removing
it. btw, placing the bezel inside the cutout instead of trying to
shape it to an outline drawn on paper should be easier and more
accurate.

good luck -
ive


#17

Thanks to everyone for responding.

I did use some of the methodes described by you with satisfactory
results. However, because I am planing to make few of these pendants
in different sizes (same shape of ellipse) I felt that some sort of
automation would be helpful. Also Leonid quite correctly touched on
soldering issue.

There are some vague ideas in my head. I will keep you posted.

Thanks again.
Joe